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Dear American Liberals: Can we stop joking about the Trump?

Dernière mise à jour : 23 août 2021

Yes, we got it, he is an ignorant narcissistic misogynist racist self proclaimed billionaire but Trumpism is here to stay

Satiric shows focusing on Donald Trump are becoming less and less funny. For over a year now, we have known what he stands for and yes, we got it, he is an ignorant narcissistic misogynist racist self proclaimed billionaire. Yet we are nearing his arrival to office with a team that looks like a bunch of savages waiting to be unleashed, but not too many seem to be worried about it.

Be it the Daily Show, Saturday Night Live or Stephen Colbert among others, they deserve due credit for their tremendous work to make Trump’s lies, incompetence and ignorance ever more blatant. But is it still time to joke about him while he is assembling a cabinet representing nazism back with a vengeance?

Alt-white ideologist Stephen Bannon whom was named “the most dangerous political operative in America” by Bloomberg is now his chief strategist. For Americans who were promised economic security, Trump brought Goldman Sachs onboard through its former lobbyist Eric Ueland who probably will not be advising him on social justice. James Mattis who boasted about the massacres of civilians in Afghanistan and Iraq is on his way to become Secretary of Defence. Michael Catanzaro, a former paid lobbyist for the Koch brothers is in charge of advising him on energy issues which spells nothing good for the environment.

Described as a “right-wing nutty” by Collin Powell, Michael T Flynn is going to head the national security apparatus with an ideological bias against Muslims that could not be more explicit. With declarations such as “I have been at war with Islam” or with his creeping sharia conspiracy claims, he sounds no different from Radovan Karadzic during his trial for genocide against Muslims in former Yugoslavia.

The “American left” looks like a bunch of puppies hugging and whining while vultures are gathering around them. Beyond the already threatening cabinet, the far right nebula is growing. And while american “liberal” media outlets are filling the airwaves with jokes and blaming Russia, Wikileaks or the electoral college for their defeat or displaying their lack of dignity, this is what is going on around them:

_Dutch far right leader Geert Wilders who argued that “Islam and nothing but Islam is the cause of our problems” was invited by Alabama State Senator Bill Ketron to the Republican Convention. _After celebrating his “patriotic spring” in Vienna with Marine Le Pen, Austrian far right leader Heinz-Christian Strache visited Michael T. Flynn (yeah the “right-wing nutty”) in New York a few weeks ago. _French far right leader Marine Le Pen in turn built ties with the far right in Italy and with the head of Germany’s AfD Frauke Petry. Now everyone around her will benefit from the international stature she has been given by the Time’s unfolding the red carpet to her or by complacent interviews like the BBC’s recent one. _ Last month, British far right leader Nigel Farage met with Donal Trump in order to offer him “his services”. _White supremacist website Breitbart is now opening offices in London and Paris before France’s presidential and Germany’s federal elections.

Hence, the groundbreaking map of the islamophobia network is already outdated for the latter has expanded beyond the US and is setting roots in Europe. Perhaps islamophobia is not much of a concern for many democrats, liberals and progressives alike but the policies targeting western muslims always end up targeting the rest.

In the age of post truth politics, it is not enough to say “racism is evil” or “that candidate is bad” unless you bring a credible radical alternative to the status quo. While many liberals are displaying an arrogant self righteous mentality, Donald Trump, Marine Le Pen, Geert Wilders or Nigel Farage are honouring a transaction with people who want to be lied to and to be told how the elites are conspiring against them, how minorities are after them, and how they will benefit from more neoliberalism.

America may have elected a clown to the white house but his policies won’t be a joke. No one will laugh his way through the next four years especially with Obama’s disastrous legacy in terms of transparency and freedom of the press, expanded drone assassination program, violation of privacy, wall street defiance or security apparatus impunity and even institutional amnesia among other policies.

Who’s going to forget Obama’s “At least I will go down as a President” or that 2011 White House correspondent’s diner until Trump walked on stage with his “I told you so” smile? Italy’s PM Matteo Renzi making fun of far right leader Matteo Salvini until losing an election. Britain’s Nigel Farage being mocked for years by members of the EU parliament until he managed to drag his country out of the EU through a Brexit campaign built on lies, xenophobia and racism?

Enough with the jokes about Trump. Unless the plan is to laugh while him and his team are ripping America apart and ransacking weaker nations, shouldn’t the Trumposkeptics use their unique platforms to empower those who will be resisting and fighting him?

Downplaying the threat with jokes won’t make it any less dangerous let alone make it disappear. The time being spent mocking him would be much more useful if it were cut in half. We need more politically agressive anti-establishment, empowering satire, otherwise, the same who made us laugh yesterday will keep laughing until they become the laughing stock again.

As much as I am a firm opponent to nazis, white supremacists and fascists, I am not blind to their capacity to work together and to put the means to reach their goals however dangerous or morally reprehensible. If jokes are the only things left for the American Left, then the near future will spell more lost battles as a result of not being up to the task.

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